New York Knicks: Beat the Best

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The New York Knicks have struggled to beat the NBA’s Elite. Should they not be taken seriously because of it?

When you want to be recognized as the best, you have to beat the best. Unfortunately, this has not been the case for the Knicks to start the season. The Knicks have only beaten two teams that have a record above .500. In contrast, all of their losses have been to teams with a record above .500. Ultimately, beating the teams that you are supposed to beat is good for now but means nothing in the grand scheme of things. If the Knicks want to be respected as a contender, they need those statement wins against the NBA’s best.

Closing the Deal

Now, even though the Knicks haven’t won against any championship contenders thus far, they have come close to doing so. In the season opener against the Celtics, the Knicks competed well and pushed Boston to the limit. Unfortunately, they couldn’t hang on to the late 4th quarter lead and took a 108-104 defeat at MSG. Also, in their first in-season tournament game against the Bucks, the Knicks kept Milwaukee on their heels and even took a two point lead with over a minute left to go in the game. In the end, Damian Lillard went on a clutch 6-0 run in the next two possessions which helped seal the 110-105 victory for the Bucks. 

What do these two losses have in common? Late Game Collapses!

The Knicks have been prone to making critical late game errors that have cost them wins. If they can’t find the way to limit those errors, it will continue to haunt them down the road. When you have to face opponents such as Damian Lillard and Jayson Tatum, mistakes down the stretch have to be at a minimum. These are the types of guy’s that will make you in the most crucial moments. In order to be recognized as true contenders, the Knicks need to close the game when the opportunity presents itself. Otherwise, they will never be looked at as title contenders.

An Oppurtunity

On Tuesday, The Knicks will play against the Bucks in the in-season tournament quarterfinals. This is the perfect opportunity for the Knicks to prove themselves. The in-season tournament might not be the playoffs or finals but winning against the NBA’s Elite can be huge. Obviously, winning the tournament would be a confidence booster to the team but it would also show people that the Knicks are not pretenders. Above all, the Knicks goal for this tournament should be to prove the doubters wrong. Show them that this team should be taken seriously as a contender. The time is now.

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